Friday, July 29, 2011

Volkswagen Demonstrates the 'Temporary Auto Pilot'

This past month in June, Volkswagen; as a part of the 'HAVEit' project presented to the world the “Temporary Auto Pilot” (TAP) system, which allows the car to drive semi-autonomously up to a speed of 130 kilometres per hour on a motorways. The driver has to monitor the vehicle, this technology actually is a link between today’s driver assistance systems and the vision of fully automatic driving for the future.
Research project 'HAVEit' (Highly Automated Vehicles for Intelligent Transport) is basically an EU funded project aimed at increasing driving safety and boosting the European automotive industry in the international market. HAVEit, is a collaboration between 17 partners from the European automotive industry and scientific community. 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Power Up: Gives Paper Airplane a Motor and Propeller

At some point as a kid or teenager everyone is fascinated with paper airplanes. Despite the hi-tech world we live in, there hasn't been a lot of changes as to how we make and fly our paper crafts. In fact nobody thought of paper airplane in the commercial sense. But now finally we have an add-on to the paper airplane that can make paper airplanes fly for longer and thus making them more exciting. It has been finally empowered with a motor!

A new toy company which calls its self  'Taylor L.L.C.' started up this year with it’s first new product called 'PowerUp – Electric powered paper airplane'. Founder and owner 'Shai Goitein' set up the company as a platform for developing and selling unique and innovative toys.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Cyclocopter Aircraft: Another way to hover and fly.

The human dream of flying has a long history, the aircraft designs we see today are the outcome of all the sacrifice and hardwork of a long list of inventors. On the contrary some designs never made it in the real world because of their complexities and lack of resources. One such aircraft design is the Cyclocopter also called a Cyclogyro. The original idea is know to be almost a century old. Basically, a cyclocopter is similar to a helicopter, it creates lift by means of rapidly moving airfoils. But unlike a helicopter, a cyclocopter's airfoils rotate about a horizontal axis, they continually changing their pitch in order to generate thrust in one single direction.

The idea is not as simple as it sounds and that's the reason no aircraft based on this system made it into real world applications. But that might change for good, a team of researchers at the University of Maryland from the Department of Aerospace Engineering have been working on this concept since 2008. It is a radically alternate concept to conventional helicopters. It can revolutionize vertical flight especially in the field of robotic Micro Air Vehicles (MAVs) which have a wide range of military and civilian applications.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Tata builds the world's cheapest house (flatpack)

The TATA group of companies have been gaining a lot of international attention, one reason being its endeavour of buying out Jaguar, Land Rover and Corus Steel, the other being building the worlds cheapest car, the 'Tata Nano'.
The latest thing that's making news from TATA is their latest project of creating the world's cheapest houses dubbed 'Nano homes'.

India is a highly populous country, only second to China and a lot of people live below poverty line. This project from Tata can help a lot of poor people not only in India but around the world. The project is aimed to provide poor families who could not normally afford to own property. Its mainly aimed to eradicate the ever growing slums in cities like Mumbai.
Getting into the details, its a project undertaking from Tata Steel. The house comes with pre-fabricated materials, including roofs, doors and windows. It's basically a kit, which can be erected or assembled. The basic house is so designed to fit in a space of 20 square meters. Materials used in the kit consist of coconut or jute cladding complete with interior layouts. The house will cost a mere Rs.32000 or 500 Euros and can be erected in a weeks time on a patch of land. There is also a larger 30 square meter house which includes optional extras, such as a front verandah and a solar energy system

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ideum MT55: The Thinnest, Largest, Most Powerful Multitouch Table

Ideum, a U.S. based company that's known for designing and creating interactive computer-based exhibits and multitouch installations, has unveiled a new multi-touch table called the MT55, adding to its already existing MT55 PROTouch Table, the major difference being the dimensions and thus the hardware.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

LG introduces the world's first 'Glasses-Free' 3D monitor

3D technology has been pretty slow in being a part of our everyday lives, mainly cause of the odd glasses you need wear to view the content, and also because of the high price of the technology. That may not be the case anymore. LG electronics unveiled the world's first Glasses-free 3D monitor with eye-tracking technology. The special feature of the monitor is it utilizes 'eye-tracking technology' to maintain an optimal 3D image from a range of viewing angles, this has been made possible because of the integrated webcam in the top sleeve of the screen.

Monday, July 11, 2011

I’m Watch: Android based smartwatch

It's really cumbersome to pull out your big sized smartphone from the pocket every time it rings for some reason, or you just want to have a quick check. How about a wrist watch that stays connected to your phone and shows essential info at just a glance away. That's what an Italian company called, 'Blue Sky s.r.l' has come up with. A Smart wristwatch called the 'I’m Watch'.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Hemispherical Gimbaled Wheel Drive System (HOG Wheel)

Sometimes the simplest of designs can make you achieve the once considered impossible. 'Curtis Boirum', a Master student in Mechanical Engg. at Bradley University, Peoria, Illinois just proved the fact. He developed a Hemispherical omnidirectional gimbaled wheel (HOG) drive system which basically is nothing hi-tech so to speak, but its pure genius.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

MSI unveils the world's first PCI Express 3.0 motherboard

Renowned motherboard manufacturer 'MSI' unveiled the world's first motherboard to feature a PCI Express 3.0 slot. PCI Express Gen 3 slot provides a data transfer rate that is upto 200% faster than PCI Express Gen 2 (PCI Express 2.0) resulting in enhancing the performance of graphics cards without bandwidth limitations or bottle necking. The board is named 'Z68A-GD80 (G3)', this makes it a future proof board for handling upcoming high bandwidth cards without any compromise. 

Friday, July 8, 2011

Magnetic Microprocessors for more energy efficient computing devices

Present day silicon based microprocessors work by moving electrons around a circuit. This results in generation of lots of heat due to resistance, which ultimately results in wastage of energy. According to an analysis by University of California, Berkeley's electrical engineers, they say; future computers may work differently, relying on magnetic microprocessors that consume the least possible amount of energy allowed by the laws of physics (thermodynamic laws).  
In the future Microprocessors employing nano-meter sized bar magnets for memory, logic and switching operations theoretically would require no moving electrons. 

North-South magnetic fields of closely spaced magnets allow logic operations like those in conventional transistors.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

YouTube's new Experimental redesign: "Cosmic Panda"

Popular video sharing site YouTube today launched a new experimental user interface (design) for YouTube code named "Cosmic Panda". In its first look it looks a lot different than  the current interfaceIt has a totally new color scheme. It incorporates more of black around the video window. 
Once you're in the experiment, much of YouTube will look different, including videos, playlists and channels compared to what you are accustomed to see.
The channel pages look good too. They look more wider and the new layout design shows information about the page in a much better way.

Facebook Skype-Powered Video Calling is now official

A few days ago at Tech center we reported a rumor about Facebook's new video calling feature to be revealed on the 6th of July. Its now official! Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the new features at the company's headquarters in Palo Alto, California. This announcement follows up on Zuckerberg making a comment of "something awesome" last week. You can now video chat with your friends right from Facebook at minimal hassle without any software. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Virtual Grocery Shopping in South Korea

Grocery shopping always turns out to be a 'task' you have to do may be once a week. Its a time consuming job and a lot of people actually don't like it. 'Tesco' an international U.K. based grocery chain called Home Plus in South Korea, came up with a genius new way to make shopping a more easy task by adding the virtual element to it.

Home Plus actually plastered posters which have images of groceries on the walls of subway station labeled with a unique QR code for each product. For those who don't know, QR codes are 'quick response codes', a boxy geometric image that actually represents information about the product like price etc. So basically as commuters pass by these poster on their way to work, they can use a mobile phone app to scan the QR codes of the products they would like to buy. The products automatically land in the online shopping cart then users can check out. The groceries are automatically delivered to their doorstep by the end of the work day. So all you do to shop is scan QR codes of the products you want.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Controlling a Quadrotor via Kinect

There have been so many amazing things people have come up with using the Microsoft kinect. Here is another one, this time its with a Quadrotor. The guys from Flying Machine Arena at ETH Zurich have come up with this really interesting concept of controlling robots through physical interactivity. This adds another dimension as to how we can control flying robots.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

China now has the World’s Longest Sea Bridge

China has been really working into developing some really amazing structures since the past decade. Their latest offering is the worlds longest sea bridge called the 'Jiaozhou Bay bridge'. The bridge is a staggering 42.4km (26.3 miles) in length and 110ft in width. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, it beats Louisiana’s Lake Pontchartrain Causeway in the US, the previous world-record holder by a little more than 2 miles. 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Facebook set to Launch 'In-Browser Video Chat'

In the midst of  all the noise the new social networking site Google+  is creating on the blogosphere and the internet, popular internet blog TechCrunch just released a news about a new Facebook Video Chat feature that is said to be launched next week. The new video chat product is powered by Skype and works in the browser.